The final stop on my 30-day tour around Australia was Cairns, and I decided to stay at Castaway’s Backpackers. Four and a half months ago, it came under new ownership and so I wanted to check the place out for myself. Wayne and his family have done an excellent job renovating and revamping this backpackers, and it’s a refreshing getaway from the party hostels in the center of town!
Castaway's Backpackers Accommodation
Castaway’s Backpackers has a variety of room options ranging from single rooms, to twin rooms, to double rooms, and ensuite rooms too. They also boast no bunk beds, which is fantastic should you be staying in one of their dorms! Each room has ceiling fans, air conditioning, and a fridge.
Castaway’s Backpackers has a lovely outdoor common area with a pool table and plenty of picnic tables; this was the most popular area of the backpackers. If people weren’t found on the patio, most were lounging by the pool out front. Inside, you can find a fully-equipped kitchen and great TV lounge with various movies. If you’re looking to book any day trips or activities from Cairns, the staff is also more than happy to do so.
One of the things that makes Castaway’s Backpackers unique is that they host a weekly BBQ every Sunday night. For $10AUD, you’ll have access to an incredibly well-made and delicious buffet dinner. They served everything from kangaroo meat to chicken breast, pasta salad of various kinds, baked peppers, grilled corn, burgers, etc. You most definitely won’t leave dinner hungry, and it adds a great vibe to the hostel! If it’s not Sunday and you’re hungry, there’s a 24 hour grocery store nearby and plenty of restaurants too.
Castaway’s Backpackers offers a free shuttle to and from the town center if you don’t feel like walking in the heat. As long as you give the office some advanced warning, it’s no problem whatsoever. While this is an extremely useful addition to the backpackers, what I most appreciated was the free shuttle to the airport! When I asked them how best to get to the airport for my flight to Tokyo, the staff immediately offered to drive me there free of charge, and even let me make a pitstop at the post office so I could ship some things home! They were so accommodating.
The Owners and the Staff
People tend to make or break your experience. The staff over at Castaway’s Backpackers were incredibly sweet, approachable, knowledgable, and friendly. They went above and beyond in the customer service area and truly want to keep Castaway’s Backpackers a comfortable spot to stay in Cairns; they are continuously improving and adding to the environment to keep it as enjoyable as could be!
The Staff at Castaway’s are open to all ideas and activities. The day I arrived, they were arranging a group hike nearby that a few of the guests wanted to go on. I found it fantastic that they were so keen to lead activities and show us around Cairns. If you’re looking to book any day trips or activities from Cairns in general, the staff is also more than happy to help you do so.
I couldn’t have asked to stay at a better place for my last few nights in Australia. I can’t wait to return when I ultimately start in Cairns and work my way down Australia’s West Coast someday in the future!
**Special thanks to Castaway's Backpackers for sponsoring my stay. As always, all opinions are my own.
I had the pleasure of living and working here for three months. A true home from home.